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2000 Best Practice Awards

Best of the Best Winners: Colorado

Best Practice: State of Colorado’s Department of Human Services’ Partnership

Focus on the Disabled Provides Chance for Homeownership

Denver, Colorado. Affordable homeownership can be the source for integrating persons with disabilities more fully into their communities. A pilot project by the Colorado Department of Human Services and key partners has become a valuable resource for low-income persons with disabilities who want to become homeowners. In just the few first months of operations, several low-income persons with disabilities are already in the beginning stages of homeownership.

The Department of Human Services’ Supportive Housing and Homeless

Photo of Ms. Tonelli receiving Best of the Best award
Ms. Tonelli (c) receiving Best of the Best award from Secretary Cuomo (l) and Deputy Secretary Ramirez (r)

Programs partnered with six lenders, the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority and 60 local service providers to help families through the loan application process and provide counseling before, during and after the purchase process.

Eligible families—those affected by disabilities and earning less that 30 percent median income—obtain loans through participating lenders who sell the loans to the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority through the agency’s HomeAccess program. The HomeAccess program offers first mortgage loans at a fixed interest rate of 3 percent with a 30-year amortization and a deferred second mortgage loan at 1.5 percent simple interest rate for up to $10,000 in assistance with down payment and closing costs. An important element of the program is the experimental use of Section 8 Assistance as a source of funds for mortgage payments: HomeAccess considers Section 8 Assistance in its underwriting and accepts mortgage payments from the borrower and from the Section 8 Program. The acceptance of Section 8 pay-ments permits borrowers to qualify for a higher mortgage than would otherwise be possible. Participant success in meeting their ongoing financial obligations is further ensured by an established network of flexible, long-term support services that are made available to help them with independent living.

Contact: Jamie Kelly, Phone: (303) 672-5443
Tracking Number: 2403
Winning Category: Geographic and Program (Community Builder)


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Content Archived: April 20, 2011

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